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Iran, Arts

Iranian art forms have a long tradition and distinctive style, as exemplified in architecture, carpets, ceramics, metalware, painting, and woodwork. Government patronage of artists dates from more than 2,000 years ago. Aesthetic ideals predating the Islamic conquest of the 7th century, such as stylized figural representation and geometric shapes, influenced the evolution of art in Iran during the early Islamic period (650-1220). Examples of elaborately decorated bronze, ceramic, gold, and silver objects from this period are preserved in museums. Persian poetry also developed during this time, and works by several poets of the period are considered classic literature. During the Safavid dynasty (1501-1722), considered a golden age for Iranian art, miniature painting and architecture reached their highest point of development. In the 20th century Iranian artists and writers began experimenting with new styles and techniques, incorporating European and East Asian influences into their work.

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